Customer acquisition and loyalty is an obviously critical element to the success of any business. Businesses have to rely on a variety of methods to acquire and retain customers. Direct mail advertising, email programs such as monthly newsletters to your customer list, pay per click advertising, search engine marketing and social marketing are the most obvious. Each method has its associated cost and measurable return on investment.
Once you’ve acquired the customer, retaining them and developing repeat business can be the most profitable and least expensive way to generate more profits and success. The best way to do this is with an effective loyalty program. And there is no better or cost effective method to build a loyalty program than to use SMS Marketing (Text message marketing).
A loyalty program provides a channel for you to be able to offer your existing customers special offers and deals to entice them to return and give you repeat business. By creating an enticing reward for a certain number of repeat purchases you encourage your customers to spend more money in order to reach the reward.
A loyalty program when properly developed can also be an incentive for a non-customer to sign up which in turn gets them on your list for further marketing to them and ultimately lowering your cost of customer acquisition. A method we’ve seen customers use very successfully at acquiring new customers is to promote their loyalty program with terms such as this: “Join our VIP Mobile Club where we will be sending exclusive Mobile-Only offers and get free entry into our monthly drawing for a $50 gift card! No purchase necessary. You’ll get an immediate 20% off coupon on anything in the store just for joining!”
A loyalty program is also a way to show your customer you appreciate their business. The more a customer feels your appreciation the more inclined they are to give you repeat business. In fact, there are many studies that show on average a loyalty program can increase customer retention by 30% or more.
We also have case studies of actual customers that have generated exceptional profits by creating a loyalty program. A local restaurant generated an extra $3500 in one week simply by creating a loyalty program with an incentive for people to sign up and join their “VIP Club”, customers and non-customers alike.
Having a loyalty program also helps you to stay ahead or at least even with your competition. If your competition has a loyalty program and you don’t then chances are you are losing business to them. If your competition doesn’t have a loyalty program then you are one step ahead of them in your ability to acquire and retain customers. Just think about it, which would you rather shop at, a business that has incentives for your purchases, rewards you for being a customer and makes you feel special or a similar business that doesn’t?
And it really doesn’t matter much what type of business or service you are in. You still have to acquire and retain customers and a loyalty program can be developed to be specific to your business and type of customer regardless.
In the old days, a loyalty program consisted of a punch card. The customers had to retain it and often would lose it. And there were many steps involved. You had to print the punch card, develop punches that needed to be changed from time to time or provided some other method to secure them against fraudulent use and keep track of everything. and still the customer had to find theirs, dig it out or having lost it, start over. Such a bore.
With our SMS loyalty program everything is in the virtual world. The customer doesn’t have to find a punch card, just provide their cell phone number. To make a “punch” you or your clerk simply punches the number into a keypad on a special web page either with your phone, an inexpensive kiosk setup at the point of sale or from within a web browser with internet connection.
This makes it very easy to operate and maintain a loyalty program with a punch card system. And once setup it is fully automated, requiring very little maintenance. At etextco.com we have the most comprehensive text message marketing platform in the industry with a built in loyalty program module and many other great features designed to help you easily acquire and retain customers. At $49 monthly our program simply can’t be beat.
Equally as important, we have over a dozen years helping our customers develop successful text message marketing programs. We know what works and what doesn’t. Unlike most companies in our industry we don’t just sell the services, we’re marketers too and can offer our expertise to our customers beyond the sale.